Blaggers are Pakistan’s version ofÂ bloggers, people who are well versed in the latest tech tools and use it to market their own blogs around the web sphere. Some of these Pakistani bloggers are activists as well and are bringing about major social change by contributing towards relief efforts such as the ongoing one for swat. I got in touch with some of them in this regard and was amazed to see the effort being put in from behind the screens as well as their zeal for fellow Pakistanis. The chronicling below is in no order of rank whatsoever.
Teabreak Team & Sana Saleem
The famous chaiwalla ofÂ the Teabreak team ( incldin Asim & Bilal) and the bubbly ninja of the Pak blagger community realized the need of proper organization of the online relief effort earlier on, teabreak were the first to launch a forum for this effort at this address. What started out as a coveritlive event to bring together everything that was going on, as well as provide updates in real time from the streets of Karachi to the camps in mardan grew into various branch efforts such as the relief camp organized opposite park towers to an enormous and very effective twitter campaign where bloggers from all over Pakistan and abroad using the #swat and the #idp twitter hash tags pleaded, organized international as well as domestic support and generally caused a ruckus for the refugees of Swat. Current efforts by this org include an sms group using chopaal technology where people can join in byÂ texting “join IDP” to 0332-4672255 in order to get in the loop and a merging of their efforts with various other bloggers like mazaydar.com who are offering free banner space for a year for donatees and the Swat relief operation in Dubai which is collecting money on international grounds for the IDP’s. In short the teabreak team and sana have done an enormous amount of work and kept the forum running for write ups to live events to info spread to followups for the relief effort in Swat. They have also while doing all this given time to the camp opposite Park towers and even now as we speak are out there raising awareness for the refugees in any way they can.
The teeth maestro hit the ground running as soon as news broke on the millions of people fleeing from Swat to the camps. He was among the first to join the teabreak effort and started a relief camp of his own at his hospital to collect goods which he is as we speak is distributing by hand in swat. He has also been very actively engaged in providing the rest of us with real time reports from ground zero as well as many many pics of what the situation is really like in Swat @ his website. In a weeks worth of relief effort Awab has managed to raise a total of 2.4 million Rs which he used to buy relief hampers from Makro Lahore and loaded them on trucks to drive with, to Swat for distribution. Also of note here is the 90,000 Rs donated by Pasha as well as the team members accompanying him in this great effort organized and staffed by the blaggers of Pakistan. As of now his collection drive has reached the figure of 2.9 million rupees and still relief continues to pour in via the form of money and goods for Awab Alvi. Pics taken by him @ ground zero are here. His progress can also be viewed on twitter via the #idprelief or @DrAwab tags, overall an extremely touching initiative and effort indeed by this blagger!!
Other Pakistani bloggers (being updated constantly as per suggestions)
Mosharraf Zaidi is not only a brilliant writer and academic but is also running this entire site for the swat refugee relief effort. It is extremely detailed in effort and specific in statistics as far as informing and pointing out what is happening and what is being collected and where and how is it being dispersed. Well done sir!!
Kashif Aziz of Chowrangi fame is also doing a marvelous job in writing about the various issues facing the refugees of this crises in the camps and revealing how the NADRA authorities are busy fleecing them for replacement id cards as well as highlighting how the people are suffering asÂ govt officials dance around new york. Chowrangi has always had insightful articles and with his focus firmly now on the swat crises Kashif is doing a great deal in informing the rest of us about the real picture. I salute him!!
From twittering their sympathies to actually raising funds and awareness for the IDP’sÂ as well as donating their web portals and ideas to this effort there are many international bloggers from Pakistan who are out their on the web working tirelessly for this effort. Kalsoom of Chup deserves a mention here as she has not only been writing about and for this cause but also updating us on whats been going on in DC as far as the swat relief effort is concerned. From Dubai we have Unaiza collecting funds for Awab’s and other efforts to Masarat featuring Pak bloggers on Dubainightline radio to raise awareness for this campaign. These are just some of the international bloggers with links to Pakistan who are striving for the swat relief effort, if I were to chronicle all of them it would take a few hundred posts, such is the outpouring of concern and goodwill by these ladies and gents.
There are some people who although not very well known on the blogging scene are very diligently involved in spreading the message of awareness via twitter, a social networking platform which is the current “in rage” killer app after Facebook. Of note amongst them are Sabeen, Discomaulvi, Bilish, Swatcrises, Ali360, Harisn, Jadoon88 & Asimimtiaz these tweepers are all at work even now for Swat.
The digital presence of MQM has not been behind in anyway in not just monitoring the situation in Swat and providing updates as well as data for their organization and the KKF which as previously mentioned have collected an enormous amount of relief goods and money for the refugees, but have also been very active on Face book in the form of their members like Ali Raza Abidi, Ali.K Chisti as well as Rehan Shakoor spreading awareness and information for the IDP’s in swat and going as far as to recently announce a “Free” transport offer for any blogger collecting goods for these IDP’s.Â This is the same organization which helped bring abut the first national bloggers conference in Karachi and is now working side by side many individuals in the web sphere to provide as much help as possible for the Idp’s in Swat.
Obviously there must be some people who have been left out of this post and are doing wonderful work for the displaced people of swat whether internationally or in Pakistan. I salute each and every one of them for their efforts and humbly request that they send me data as well as pictures of their efforts so I can include them in this ongoing effort to preserve what is being done.
Long live Pakistan!!